Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#1555 Oklahoma City Thunder vs.
#1556 Houston Rockets
Saturday, November 26, 2022 at 8:10pm EST
Toyota Center, Houston
Written by Mason Folz

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This Saturday, the (7-11) Oklahoma City Thunder will travel to Houston, TX to take on the (3-14) Houston Rockets. Tipoff will be at 8:00 PM EST inside the Toyota Center (Houston). Neither of these teams has had a hot start to the season, but the last time they matched up, the Rockets walked away with a 114-110 win.

The Thunder are coming into this one after falling to the Denver Nuggets, 131-126 in overtime. Oklahoma City battled in that one, but they struggled on the defensive end of the floor. They will have to lock down the Rockets if they want to challenge them on the road.

The Houston Rockets are entering this game after losing to the Golden State Warriors, 127-120. The Rockets will also have to be better on defense, as they allowed the Warriors to shoot 53.5% from the field. They will need to contest more shots and apply more pressure if they want to take care of business at home.

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This game was written/published before last night's results.

Can the Thunder Get Hot?

The Oklahoma City Thunder are currently in 12th place in the Western Conference standings, but they are only 4.5 games back from the first-place Phoenix Suns. They are also (3-7) in their last 10. On offense, Oklahoma City is scoring 116.9 points per game and they are shooting 46.8% from the floor. This is the fifth most points scored per game and the 14th-highest team shooting percentage. They have continued to attack the basket and score inside, but they have also shown that they have a few players that can step behind the arc and knock down threes. The Thunder are shooting 34.9% from deep, which is the 17th-highest three-point shooting percentage in the NBA. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander continues to lead the way for the Thunder, as he is scoring 31.1 points per game and dishing out 6.3 assists. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Thunder have an adjusted offensive rating of 112.3, which is the 13th-highest offensive rating in the league. The Oklahoma City Thunder have also struggled at the free throw line at different times this season. They have knocked down 77.1% of their shots at the charity stripe, which is the 22nd-lowest free-throw shooting percentage in the league. They can't continue to miss out on these free looks at the basket and still expect to win these games.

On the defensive end of the court, the Thunder have struggled to consistently make stops. According to dunksandthrees.com, they have an adjusted defensive rating of 114.3, as this is the 24th-highest rating in the NBA. The Thunder are also allowing 118.3 points per game and their opponents have shot 46.8% from the floor. This is the second most points surrendered per game and the 18th-highest shooting percentage allowed from the field. They have continued to contest shots near the rim, but their perimeter defense has let them down. Oklahoma City has allowed their opponents to shoot 35.8% from deep, which is the 16th-highest three-point shooting percentage allowed. The Thunder are also snatching 44.1 rebounds per game, as this is the 15th most. They have to clean the glass and secure the ball after missed shots if they want to keep the Rockets from scoring second-chance points.

Injury Report: Mike Muscala C (Finger) is questionable for this game. Chet Holmgren C (Foot) is out for the season.

Will the Rockets Heat Up?

The Houston Rockets have not had the start to the season that they were hoping for, as they are (2-8) in their last 10 games played. They are also in last place in the Western Conference, as they are eight games back from the Phoenix Suns. On offense, the Rockets are scoring 108.6 points per game and they have shot 43.6% from the floor. This is the 26th most points scored per game and the lowest team shooting percentage in the league. They have continued to score in the paint, but they have been inconsistent from deep. Houston is shooting 34.6% from behind the three-point line, as this is the 19th-highest three-point shooting percentage in the NBA. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Rockets have an adjusted offensive rating of 109.6, which is the 24th-lowest offensive rating. Houston has been up and down at the free-throw line as well. They have only made 77.4% of their shots at the charity stripe, as this is the 20th-lowest free-throw shooting percentage in the NBA.

On the defensive end of the floor, the Houston Rockets have had a difficult time keeping their opponents off the scoreboard. They are surrendering 116 points per game and their opponents have shot 47.9% from the floor. This is the 25th most points allowed per contest and the 25th-highest shooting percentage allowed from the field. They have continued to give their opponents open looks at the basket, as they have struggled to contest shots near the rim. Luckily, the Rockets have been better on the perimeter. Houston is only allowing their opponents to shoot 35.5% from behind the three-point arc. This is the 11th-lowest three-point shooting percentage surrendered in the league. They have also grabbed an average of 45.8 rebounds per game, which is the fourth most in the NBA. They have to continue to clean the glass if they want to keep the Rockets from gaining extra possessions, which will lead to more points.

Injury Report: Jalen Green SG (Toe) and Josh Christopher SG (Shoulder) are probable. Alperen Sengun C (Groin) is doubtful. Bruno Fernando PF (Knee) is out

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

Insiders Status:

Rating:

I will pick the Oklahoma City Thunder and I am going to lay the points (-2.5). They are the better team on both ends of the court, as I see them outscoring the Rockets in this game. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Rockets have the 27th-highest adjusted defensive rating and they are allowing the 25th most points per game. Their opponents have shot 47.9% from the floor, as the Thunder will continue to push the pace and score enough points to cover the spread in this game. The Thunder are currently scoring the fifth most points per game and they have the 16th-highest team three-point shooting percentage. The Rockets will continue to give them open looks at the basket and Oklahoma City will take advantage. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has been playing at a high level, as the Rockets don't have anyone that can consistently slow him down. He will carry his team on the offensive end of the court and allow them to slowly pull away. Houston will struggle to keep up with them, as they are only scoring the 26th most points per game and they have the lowest team shooting percentage from the field. They will continue to miss open looks, as the Thunder will continue to build their lead throughout this game.

Pick the Oklahoma City Thunder and lay the points (-2.5).

Prediction: Oklahoma City Thunder -2.5

Full-Game Total Pick

Insiders Status:

Rating:

I will be hammering the over (233) in this game, as I see both of these teams scoring enough points to push this total over the number. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Rockets have the third-highest adjusted pace rating in the NBA and the Rockets have the 11th-highest. Both of these teams will continue to push the pace, which will allow both teams to have more shot attempts. Both of these teams have also stunk on the defensive end of the court, as I see both teams finding open shots consistently throughout this game. The Rockets are surrendering the sixth most points per game and the Thunder are allowing the second most. Neither of these teams has been able to slow anyone down this season, as I see both of these teams scoring consistently throughout this game. The Thunder have also shown that they can step behind the arc and knock down deep jumpers and they are scoring the fifth most points per game. Houston won't be able to slow them down and they will score the majority of the points that we need. Both of these teams will push the pace and they will continue to struggle on the defensive end of the court.

Pick the over (233) and expect a fast-paced, high-scoring game in this one.

Prediction: Over 233
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Written By Mason Folz , "Mason Folz"

Mason graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder and he has been watching SportsCenter since before he could walk. He has been crunching numbers since he could learn to count and nothing makes Mason happier in this world than talking sports, unless he is on the golf course! We are very happy to have added Mason to our team at StatSalt and you will be glad as well. Let's win some money!